Last year, NephMadness came together in about 4 weeks from concept to Selection Sunday. Because of the short time available, and the fact that we had no idea what we were doing, somethings worked and others flailed. Since we are in the middle of a bracket fever epidemic, let’s take a critical look at last year’s brackets with a focus on the changes we made in 2014.
The most important thing we got right, was dividing the field into 8 regions of 8 teams and assigning unique themes to each of these regions. In 2013 the 8 themes were:
- Big organized programs like Medicare ESRD benefit and USRDS
- Research techniques like randomized controlled trials, propensity scoring and epigenetics
- Randomized clinical trial like TREAT, IDEAL and ALLHAT
- Molecules and genes, think FGF23, Cystatin C, APOL1
- Drugs like captopril, cyclosporin and tolvaptan
- Educational resources like UpToDate, Renal Fellow Network and Wikipedia (yeah, we went there)
- Equations we use Winter’s formula, MDRD, FENa
- Renal procedures like kidney biopsy, scribner shunt and plasmapheresis.
- Captopril (1)
- Medicare ESRD benefit (1)
- HEMO trial (1)
- Transplant (2)
When we started thinking about assembling the field for 2014, we decided to get outside help. The plan was to work with experts in various corners of nephrology to unearth some gems that the core editors of NephMadness would never have considered.
David Goldfarb, immediately grokked the game and over the course of an hour long phone call filled his brackets with great pairings that hit on stone issues relevant to nephrologists. He selected teams that represented diagnosis, treatment, the future and the past. He built a bracket that we, literally, could not have done without him.